Jimmer Fredette hasn't had too many opportunities in his first three seasons in the NBA, but he'll be hoping that all changes after signing a one-year deal with the New Orleans Pelicans.
ESPN's Marc Stein reported the news of Fredette's new deal:
ESPN sources say New Orleans is signing Jimmer Fredette to a one-year deal— Marc Stein (@ESPNSteinLine) July 18, 2014
NOLA.com's John Reid confirmed the report:
League sources confirm Pelicans have signed Jimmer Fredette and re-signed Darius Miller— John Reid (@JohnReid64) July 18, 2014
Reid also noted the salary involved in the deal:
With a need to replace departed free agent Anthony Morrow, guard Jimmer Fredette agreed to a one-year, veteran minimum contract to join the New Orleans Pelicans, a league source confirmed Thursday night.
Fredette's career to this point has rarely lived up to the billing of being the 10th overall pick in the 2011 NBA draft, as he has made just seven starts in 179 appearances. All of those starts came in his first season with the Sacramento Kings. But the former BYU star has been productive off the bench and should see a larger role moving forward.
When asked to step up, as he was late in the 2013-14 season for the Chicago Bulls, Fredette occasionally shined. The reserve guard filled in for D.J. Augustin against the Orlando Magic and helped carry the team, per CSN Chicago:
Jay Drew of The Salt Lake Tribune notes exactly what Fredette can do when asked to take over at guard:
Jimmer Fredette plays 31 minutes tonight, scores 17 points on 7 of 14 shooting in Bulls' 108-95 win over Orlando.— Jay Drew (@drewjay) April 15, 2014
Though he hasn't been quite as successful as the Kings had hoped, Fredette has certainly developed into a good role player in the NBA.
Much of his success is attributed to his work on and off the court, as he works to improve his game at the NBA level. Bulls teammate Joakim Noah spoke about that work ethic last season, via Kyle Chilton of BYU media relations:
'I've never seen a dude work so hard on his game every day, and it just shows. Hard work pays off.' Joakim Noah on Jimmer Fredette.— Kyle Chilton (@kylechilton) April 15, 2014
After posting 5.6 points per game while playing less than 11 minutes per contest in 2013-14, Fredette can be a productive bench player for the Pelicans. If he can put together more performances like he did against the Magic last season, this might be a bigger move than it appears at this point, as there's a good chance he'll see more playing time in New Orleans.
Adding another shooter to the team adds depth to an already explosive offense. Given the chance to contribute on a nightly basis, Fredette can help at times with instant offense and solid numbers from long range.
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